Welcome to "The Gods Are Bored," officially sanctioned by the International Federation of Gods and Goddesses (IFG&G) since 2005!
Decibel the Parrot and I are home alone this evening. Mr. Johnson took the daughters to a family party in a faraway locale. It's too cold to go buzzard-watching, so I'm going to catch up with a topic that I've been meaning to address for a few weeks.
We at "The Gods Are Bored" cannot speak for every Christian who has decided to leave Christianity for another faith. But one small component of our decision to bolt from the Bible was the fact that we found ourselves in church surrounded by people who didn't seem to be getting it. By "it," I mean Jesus Christ's central message of separation from the affairs of state in order to contemplate (at whatever cost financially and socially) the Great Divine.
Put more simply, true Christians should not vote, although they should pay their taxes. They should not seek retribution for any grievance, be it a shooting of little girls in a one-room Amish schoolhouse or a bombing of a pair of New York high rise buildings with thousands of innocent souls inside.
Jesus said the meek will inherit the earth.
I guess we could give Jesus credit for some future vision of a globally-warmed earth boiling the meek into dehydrated submission. But I don't think that's what he had in mind.
Decibel the Parrot has had his bath, and after I'm finished up here I'm off to the mega-bookstore to buy a book. It's called American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War on America, by Chris Hedges. Mr. Hedges has a degree in divinity from Harvard University and is the son of a Presbyterian pastor.
In his book, Hedges demonstrates that the Christian right is not "Christian" at all, but instead a large group of politically-motivated people who have not found security in the new global economy. These people find comfort in a mass movement that promises them a better future after the Rapture.
That's not enough, though. Two things happen to people in this movement:
1. They fall victim to smoke screens. They focus on issues like gay marriage and teaching evolution in schools rather than the forces that are disrupting their lives, like the burgeoning costs of the war in Iraq and the tidal wave of job losses to cheaper overseas markets.
2. They want to use the government as a tool to turn their particular beliefs into law.
No, I'm not smart enough to think up fancy stuff like this. Chris Hedges proposes all of the above in his book.
Then he goes one chilling step further.
For this next part, you'll need to dust off those black boots and spruce up your goose step.
Hedges writes that all America needs is a severe economic depression or a major terrorist attack to set these so-called "Christians" into Heil Hitler mode. Remember, the aforementioned dictator came to power in Germany at a time when the German economy was in the tank. And he never won over ALL Germans, just ENOUGH Germans to subdue the dissenters. The Germans who didn't care one way or another just went along for the ride.
Chris Hedges envisions a future America built on a "Christian" fascist model, in which "good Christians" spy on their neighbors to make sure everyone is living a "moral" life. The morals being legislated, of course. Anyone found in violation of the legalized "morals" would face penalties.
"Pish tosh," you say. "Anne, why don't you try a little light reading, like Harry Potter or something? Our U.S. Constitution would protect us from fascists."
Emmm hemmm. Excuse me if this is spelled wrong, but the Brown Shirts burned down the Reichstag. Germany was a technologically forward nation filled to the plimsol line with university-educated citizens. No one stopped the fascists there.
Even before Mr. Hedges came along with his book, I had been thinking about an old-time politician named William Jennings Bryan.
Let's leave behind the fact that Bryan, an ardent Christian, would find precious little common ground with today's Christian Right. Let's just imagine that someone as charismatic, and as dedicated, and as magnificent at speechmaking, came along in troubled times to lead America both politically and spiritually. Now let's imagine that this charismatic political/religious leader accepted the Christian Right agenda.
Okay, I'm even scaring myself. Where's my blankie?
A handful of my legions and legions of readers might think that "The Gods Are Bored" and Mr. Hedges are overstating the case.
I invite you to take a look at Exhibit A below. I can't link to this guy's blog, "R U Rapture Ready," for some odd computer-related (or fae-related) reason. So I'll copy and paste. The author's name is Alberto Trippe:
EXHIBIT A: CHRISTIAN FASCIST
Beware you liberals, I am back and I am mad as heck at what has happened to our country.We God-fearing America-loving Christians are not going to let you flag-burning bleeding heart tree-hugging liberals destroy our country with your anti-gun pro-homosexual agenda.NO, NO, NO!Don't even begin to think that we will accept this with no fight!Get ready because there are a lot of us and we are really mad at what you and all you phony baloney limo-liberals are doing, or well attempt to do with this God-blessed Christian nation.
Lest you think the above Exhibit is satire, I assure you that I have been following Mr. Trippe's posts for some time. Every time a commenter proposes that he must be joking, Mr. Trippe responds that every word he writes is dead serious.
Please excuse me now. I've got to go find my blankie. Or my passport. Or both.
THE MERLIN OF BERKELEY SPRINGS